The universality of experience is very reassuring to people. All the pep and joy is gone. He/she never has a positive word to say about anything, and criticizes everything you and your children do. He/she refuses to see a therapist or to talk to anyone about his/her problem because he/she believes he/she has no problem. Mired in depression, paranoia, anger, and often alcohol abuse, he/she makes everyone close to him miserable. It is time to leave. Your spouse behaves in ways that violate the basic agreements you made when you got married. For example, he/she may be having affairs. Or may control all the money. Or may insist, out of the blue, that the family join a religion they don't want to join or leave a religion they love. These irreconcilable differences can be a solid reason to divorce The idea is to allow your energy field to rearrange itself without any input from your conscious mind. Notice any changes in your physical body and your overall energy field. You may notice that your energy and/or body feels lighter or more expanded. You may notice that your face has relaxed into a very light smile. You may feel refreshed, or you may feel slightly agitated or anxious (the following exercise will help to resolve this tension if it occurs). Whatever you notice is fine. The point of this part of the exercise is to re-tune your sensitivity and to increase the level of communication you have between your body and your conscious mind and between your conscious mind and the part of your mind that is tuned into the energy of your heart field. Repeat the affirmation about five times, linking each affirmation to your relaxed breathing pattern. Notice any changes, however subtle they may seem.
Advanced Process Behaviorism largely died out in the 1960's partly because of Chomsky's devastating review of Skinner's article, Verbal Behavior. Yet, the peak of reinforcement research was in the 1970's (during Nim's training), and it's now widely considered an established scientific principle. In response to its continued popularity, Noam Chomsky states, It can't die. It doesn't matter how often it's refuted and how fully it's refuted; In my review of Introduction to Psychology textarticles, none of them presented a balanced or critical view of the theory despite long-held critiques against it. At the same time, most psychologists no longer believe all behaviors are learned through positive reinforcement. It's now far more common to believe certain behaviors are hardwired but that positive reinforcement still plays a role in learning and modifying behavior. In the final section of this article, I will (briefly) make the case against it playing such a role, arguing that reinforcement is an unscientific and meaningless concept. The Aftermath If you're wondering what happened to Nim after the study was terminated, he was initially sent back to the primate facility in Oklahoma, where he was born. It says, Yes, I have felt that, or You know, I have experienced that, too. You are not alone. This kind of genuine sharing of experience can make people feel uniquely understood. Be careful not to let the central focus of the discussion switch from the other person back to you, if you choose to share a piece of your experience or background as a way of reinforcing your understanding. The rationale for sharing something from your past should be to reinforce the message that the other person's circumstances are not uncommon and that they are not alone in having to experience what they are experiencing. This kind of supportive message is valuable. What is not as valuable, is turning the discussion back to a focus on your unique circumstances. Practicing empathy is other-oriented; It is more about understanding others.
Let the Story Unfold You don't like the temperature he/she insists on setting the thermostat at. This one is a joke, but I put it in because many couples do get divorced for reasons equally trivial or even more trivial. I hate the way he squeezes the toothpaste out of the tube. She is such a slow driver. He never lets me watch my TV shows. When he went bald, what can I say? I can't be married to a bald man. And hairpieces only make it worse! Of course, the trivial reasons usually cover some deeper dissatisfaction or conflict. The love is gone. Fine-tuning our Body's Healing Power An extension of the above practice is to use the practice of stating your values to your body as a personalized healing tool. As you get increasingly adept at feeling and sensing the flow of energy in your body and your energy fields, your values can be used to gain detailed and useful information about what you need to release and heal. With practice, you can get a very physical sense of where the record of old beliefs and programming are held in your cellular memory. You can locate and release memories of trauma, both from the physical body and the emotional energy body. And you can find the knots, blocks and locks that your thoughts and emotions have created in your energy channels. Although we spend most of our lives being governed by outdated energetic information, most of us still live under the illusion that our behavior is governed by the choices we make with our conscious mind. As we discovered earlier in this article, most of our behavior is the result of the database of experiences and associated hard-wired habitual responses that the fear-based part of our subconscious mind has stored in order to help us survive. With practice, using the techniques in this article will help you get a real sense of where the markers are that our mind-created self (or ego) uses to limit us and to keep our lives safe and small.
These blocks in the physical body (from ancestral, present or past life programming) are the energetic markers that your subconscious mind has been using to create your reality. Nim's life changed overnight; The one and only time Terrace visited him there, Nim sprang up, recognizing him immediately, and engaged Terrace in play and signing. But as soon as Terrace left, Nim refused to eat. After about one year, Nim was secretly sold to a medical laboratory in New York. The researchers planned to use Nim for research, which would involve injecting him with Hepatitus B. The research on Nim, however, would likely not be nearly as bad as the conditions in which Nim would live. Upon his arrival, Nim was kept alone in a refrigerator-sized cage with no fresh air or exposure to sunlight. He would also no longer receive the human affection he intensely craved. At one point, the medical staff apparently noticed something strange about Nim's behavior. He kept intensely signing to them, clearly trying to convey something urgent. As we slow down and avoid snap judgments, we create an environment that lets the other person's story unfold. The empathic communicator asks herself, Have I heard this person's full `story'? Do I understand it? This is a skill that takes much practice. Indeed, it is an art to determine that a story that one is listening to is incomplete and to use this determination to facilitate a deeper understanding. It is almost always useful to probe for more information about a circumstance--if all necessary information has been elicited, the other party will either tell you so, or the information will become increasingly redundant with what has been elicited before. But the process is one in which the other person is granted permission and the psychological space to expand on parts of the story that have yet to be revealed. Many of us have an urge or compulsion to move forward with solutions too quickly, before all circumstances are known and understood. We want to add value, so we quickly seize on a solution.
But when the solution is rushed, the other individual will leave with the sense that the problem received inadequate attention and was not fully understood. This is the toughest reason to get divorced. I always ask, Have you done everything you can to bring it back? Part of the reason for writing this article was to offer plans to bring it back. Our experience is that lost love can often be rediscovered. But, if it can't, then it is likely better for both parties to say farewell. FORTY WAYS TO MAKE YOUR MARRIAGE GREAT The overarching goals for a great marriage To see clearly what you want in your main relationship and to feel every day that you are getting closer to that vision. To relish and enjoy fully what you already have. To feel inspired every day by the power of your dream and the opportunity you have to pursue it. They pinch and restrict your energy flow through your body's many energy channels. Much like a crumpled aluminium drinks can, they limit the size of your container, and, therefore, the amount of life force you have flowing through you. The flow of your energy when you declare a truth to your body should be smooth and strong. Get into your relaxed breathing pattern again and then state your affirmation to your body. Notice where your energy flows smoothly in your body when you declare your value out loud. And notice where your energy does not flow smoothly. Focus your attention on the areas of your body that hold information and memories that are in conflict with the truth you are stating to them. Imagine you can breathe light directly into these areas when you breathe in. Hold your breath in that part of the body for three counts and imagine you are making an expanding spiral of light in that localized region.